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Loving with All He Has Given

06.03.20
by Nathan; Missionary to Ireland
in Americas, Church Support, Stories
" Everything in our lives - every moment, decision, ability, and resource - is an opportunity for us to use our muchness for Him."

     This season has impacted us all in different ways: economically, socially, and physically. For those of us staying at home, I hope you have taken some time to quiet your heart and ask God how to be utilized in this season. I pray also that will be reminded of God’s steadfast faithfulness. 
     Deuteronomy 6:5 reads, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength.” Strength is a peculiar word especially in times like ours where many of us feel especially weak and helpless. For many, this year has marked a dark moment as our lives feel increasingly vulnerable and isolated. The question arrives, “How can I love the Lord with all my strength when I feel so weak?” 
     After a closer examination, the Hebrew word for “strength” is me’od, which is most often translated "very" or "muchness." When we are told to love God with all our strength, we are being guided to a lifestyle of honoring Him with what we have much or excess of. For most of us, we have been given the gift of much time as we wait on our governments to give us the green light to return to normalcy. For some, we have excess financial stability and can support others in need. All of us can use this moment to encourage, strengthen, and refocus. How can we love our God with the muchness He has given us all?  
     Everything in our lives - every moment, decision, ability, and resource - is an opportunity for us to use our muchness for Him. May this season be less about getting our to-do list updated, but rather focused on using the muchness we have in loving God and our neighbor.

This season has given many of our missionary’s unique opportunities to share the love of Christ with many in their communities who are in need. Read below for a few testimonials of how our missionaries are meeting tangible needs, because of the generosity of many who have given sacrificially during this time. We are grateful for the many who partner with Avant to enable the ministry to continue. Thank you!

     Guatemala- Thank you for your generosity that has allowed us to bless families in need here in Guatemala. We have focused our outreach on two neighborhoods, El Encinal and Los Ortiz. Each family received 5 lbs. of beans, 5 lbs. of corn, 3 lbs. of rice, 3 lbs. of sugar, 4 lbs. of oats, 1.5 lbs. pints of cooking oil, soap, and detergent, and a few received diapers as well. These packets were a blessing to all those who received! Thank you for being apart of blessing those in need during this time in Guatemala!

     Mexico- Thank you for giving financially to provide food to many in our community. We gave some money to Pastor Bezaleel to help with food packages for families in the church and a local outreach neighborhood. They prepared 18 packages to distribute this week with those funds and a similar amount from the church. They plan to continue to provide food packages in the coming weeks to several families as needed during this time of pandemic and economic shutdown, that has caused several to lose their jobs. Thanks for helping to meet these needs in Puebla, Mexico!

     Guatemala- Thank you so much for the contribution from the emergency fund to help provide food to needy families in Guatemala during the crisis. One of the ministries we help with is a feeding and educational program near Antigua, in San Juan del Obispo. Carlos and Jenny have been helping to provide food for needy families in the area. The situation is rather dramatic.  People put a white flag outside their home when their food has run out.  The need is great. They have given out bags of food to several families, but they also are preparing hot meals to serve in the communities around them.  This past week they provided meals for 160 people in the community of San Pedro La Huertas and they served 180 people in San Felipe de Jesus. For most of the people, it was probably the only hot meal they would have eaten that day or perhaps for more than one day.  Through this ministry, Carlos shares the love of God and the message of hope in Christ. Thank you for being a part of what God is doing here in Guatemala!

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